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Is He Using Me? 21 Little-known Signs That Will Uncover the Truth and What to Do

It can be difficult to know the answer to the question “Is he using me?”, but it's important to know the truth. If you suspect that your partner is taking advantage of you, some tell-tale signs can help you uncover the truth.

It's normal to worry about whether someone is playing with your feelings. There could be little warning signs that the person isn't sincere and trustworthy — or it could be your insecurities getting in the way.

From avoiding a committed relationship to controlling your life, these 21 little-known signs will help you determine if he is using you or not.

In this article, we'll explore all of these signs in detail so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not he truly loves and respects you. We will then give you tips on the next step to take if you find out he is using you.

Signs to Recognize if a Man is Using You

Are there telltale signs that a man is using you, but you just can't put your finger on what they are? You may be feeling like your relationship is off balance and that something isn't quite right. Well, it's important to become aware of these red flags to protect yourself.

It's easy to fall into the trap of wanting to make a relationship work so badly that we ignore the signs that our partner is not being sincere with us. But understanding the clues could save you time, energy, and heartbreak going forward.

In this article, we'll discuss 21 common signs of men who are merely using their partners and cover tips on how to recognize if a man is taking advantage of you.

1. He makes little effort to spend quality time with you

When a guy loves you, he would do whatever it takes to spend time with you. A man who loves you will go out of their way to make space in their busy schedule to see you.

If he only sees you when it's comfortable, convenient, or easy for him, then chances are he doesn't love you very much. Commonly, he'll be making excuse after excuse about why he cannot see you more often.

Any man who doesn't go the extra mile or make any extra effort to spend time with you simply doesn't love you.

2. He never talks about himself or he talks about himself only

Talking about one's self a lot is a strong sign of a self-absorbed person who doesn't care about others at all. This is a red flag to look out for.

Men who love you talk about themselves but they don't talk about themselves all the time. If he spends more time talking about himself than you, then this is a subtle sign that he does not love you.

On the flip side, men who do tell you anything about themselves are equally dangerous. Men who love you will open up to you and share things about themselves.

3. He says “I love you” too often

Men say "I love you" to women all the time. But if he keeps saying it too often, then he is either trying to manipulate you or he has no idea how to express his feelings properly.

A man who loves you understands that love is a sacred thing between the two of you. He won't throw around words like 'love' and 'I love you' just to manipulate you.

4. He keeps secrets from you

If he keeps secrets from you, then he will not be honest with you. This is an obvious sign that he doesn't trust you.

If he keeps avoiding answering questions about himself or certain things, then he is hiding something from you. And if he hides things from you, then he doesn't trust you enough to let you into his personal life.

Trust is an important part of any relationship. If he doesn't trust you, then he isn't going to be able to give you his heart.

5. He talks about other women

If he talks about other women constantly, then he is most likely not being faithful to you. If he does it all the time and doesn't seem to care if you are around or not, then that's a red flag.

It also shows he doesn't respect you or the relationship you're building. You must get yourself out of the situation because he will soon be comparing you to the other women and make you feel like you aren't good enough for him.

The worst case is if he talks about how great his ex-girlfriend was. This usually indicates that he is still stuck on his ex and does not love you.

6. He lies to you

Lying is a big no-no in loving relationships. Honesty is one of the things that foster trust in any relationship so if he is lying to you, he most likely doesn't love you.

He may lie to you about where he is coming from, what he wants, or what he needs. If he does this regularly, then he is probably lying to you about everything. If he tells you one thing and does another, then he is not trustworthy.

This kind of situation makes relationships very hard to maintain as trust will break down.

7. He avoids commitment

Commitment means making a decision and sticking to it. If he avoids committing to you, then he is not serious about you.

Ways he could avoid commitment include not telling you what his plans for you are, not introducing you to his friends or family, being reluctant to take your relationship to the next level, not following through on their promise to change, and so on.

Avoiding commitment is a tell-tale sign he doesn't see a future with you and is using you for the moment.

8. He wants to control your life

He wants to control every aspect of your life. That includes where you live, what you eat, what you wear, and even what you watch on TV.

If he tries to control your life, then he doesn't respect you as a person or consider you as an equal. This is a manipulative person who doesn't love you. Going on with this kind of person will most likely lead to an abusive relationship.

9. He rarely expresses his emotions

This is one of the biggest signs of someone who is just using you. He'll find it hard to show emotions to you.

If he is going through a hard time, he won't tell you. If he is having financial problems, he won't admit it. If he is angry, he won't express it. If he is sad, he won't cry. He never says I love you. If he is jealous, he will act as if nothing happened. If he is upset, he hides it well.

Expressing emotions is a way to show someone how much they mean to us. If he never shows emotion, then he is not showing you that he cares about you.

If he only shows emotion when he feels like it, then he is not committed to you.

10. He cancels plans without giving you notice

Another suspicious indicator he doesn't love you is frequent last-minute cancellations of plans. Canceling at the last minute is rude and disrespectful. It shows a lack of regard and respect for you.

When he won't be available for your dates or meetups, he should always let you know ahead of time.

If he cancels plans without letting you know, then he is not interested in spending time with you.

11. He only reaches out when he needs something from you

If he only contacts you when he needs something from you, this is a sign of a one-sided relationship. This could be anything from asking for money to needing help with a project or task.

He might also ask for favors like picking up groceries or running errands for him. If this is the case, then it's a bad sign that he is taking advantage of you and not treating you with respect.

12. He doesn't introduce you to his friends or family

If he never introduces you to his friends or family, then it's a sign that he is not serious about the relationship. This could mean that he doesn't see a future with you and is just using you for the moment.

He might be embarrassed to introduce you because he doesn't want anyone to know about your relationship. It could also be an awful sign of insecurity if he is afraid of what their perception of him will be.

If this is the case, then it's important to have an honest conversation with him and make sure that your feelings are respected.

13. He doesn't show interest in your life or goals

If he doesn't show any interest in your life or goals, then it's a blatant sign that he is a selfish lover. He might be using you for his benefit and not caring about what you want or need.

This could include not asking about your day, not listening to your dreams and aspirations, or not being supportive of your decisions.

If he doesn't care about what's important to you, then it's a sign that he is only interested in himself and doesn't value the relationship. It's important to have an honest conversation with him and make sure that your feelings are respected.

14. He is indifferent to your feelings or needs

This is a big red flag if you see your partner being indifferent to your feelings or needs.

You might have expressed something important to you and he's dismissed it, shrugged it off, or made it seem like what you said isn't worth thinking about. He may be prompt with immediate solutions and even suggestions for how to deal with the situation but still, holds back and gives off an energy of indifference.

Indifference can feel super hurtful and can be one of the biggest warning signs that there is something wrong in your relationship, namely that your partner doesn't truly care about how you feel, which in turn will lead the other person to not respect you.

15. He makes you feel unworthy or inferior

When someone is using you, they will often try to make you feel inferior or unworthy. He may use belittling words and phrases, or even just manipulative tactics to make you feel like you're not good enough to get what you want or need.

These feelings of worthlessness can be so subtle that it's difficult to spot the signs, but if someone makes you doubt yourself and has control over how you think about yourself, then he's using you for his gains.

The best thing to do when this happens is to walk away from the situation and find healthier relationships elsewhere where your self-esteem isn't compromised and manipulated.

16. He doesn't respect your boundaries or personal space

When a guy doesn't respect your boundaries or personal space, it is one of the clearest signs that he may be using you. No two people are completely alike and everyone has different boundaries. A partner who respects you will understand this and will not push his limits when you set them.

If someone you care about is showing signs of being disrespectful by crossing the lines of what is acceptable between partners, leaving the situation might be in your best interest.

Healthy relationships do not include unbalanced power dynamics nor should one person have complete control over another —so if someone desires this type of relationship, it’s time for them to find someone else to use.

17. He's only interested in physical intimacy

One of the most definitive, unmistakable signs that he is using you is if he only seems interested in getting physical with you. This means that he rarely (or never) takes you out on real dates and only ever wants to meet up for hookups or booty calls.

Often, people who are using another person for physical intimacy will have very little interest in really getting to know the other person better. They might appear to be listening when you talk about your passions and dreams but show no genuine interest in any of them.

18. He has a history of using or manipulating others

One of the tell-tale signs that someone is using you is if they have a history of using or manipulating others. Be on the alert for this behavior, as it's an indication that your relationship might be heading in a bad direction.

This doesn’t necessarily mean they're doing something terrible to you in the present moment — they might just have a habit of exploiting people and taking advantage of them. If he has a history of doing this with other people, then his pattern indicates that he may eventually do it to you too.

19. He is not supportive of your personal growth or development

This is a pretty huge red flag when it comes to knowing if someone is using you. If he has shown no interest or care toward your personal growth, ambitions, or goals, then he probably just wants something from you.

Whether that be emotional support, his insecurities taken out on you - whatever it may be - this is not the kind of person that is going to put your interests and needs first.

20. He constantly puts his own needs above yours

One of the most sure-fire indicators that he is using you is if he constantly puts his own needs above yours.

If all he ever cares about is himself and what he wants, then it's likely that you are just a means to an end for him. He might promise things or even try to make it look like he values your opinion or feelings, but if these promises never materialize, then consider it a red flag.

So take note of how often your guy puts his requests and needs ahead of yours. Does he frequently answer texts while you're in the middle of talking? Does he talk at length about something that interests him while barely listening to what you have to say?

These are all good signs that someone is taking advantage of their partner.

21. He uses manipulation or guilt-tripping to get what he wants

One of the clearest signs that he’s using you is if he manipulates or guilt-trips you into doing what he wants.

This could be trying to get you to stay with him even when it’s obvious that the relationship isn’t working, or making you feel guilty for wanting to spend time with your family or friends instead of being with him.

Other examples might include trying to make you feel bad for your accomplishments and successes or getting mad at or manipulating you for saying no.

Now that we have learned 21 signs that might indicate he is using you, we will now look at the steps to take when you find out he is using it to get the best results for yourself.

How to Handle a Situation When You Are Being Used by a Man

Do you feel like you're being used by a man? It can be hurtful, confusing, and downright painful. If you think that a man is using you for his benefit, it's important to take action so that you can protect yourself and get out of the situation.

It's understandable why people stay in these unhealthy relationships — a sense of guilt, fear of being judged, low self-esteem and even social pressure can make it difficult to end things.

Fortunately, there are steps that you can take if a man is using you. Here are some tips on how to handle the situation if a man is using you:

1. Recognize the signs of being used

It's also important to recognize any red flags that come up during conversations or when planning dates. Some classic signs include him blowing off plans and not following through on promises, often with little explanation.

These kinds of behaviors are a sure sign that he isn't invested in your relationship, and may mean that he is just looking to get something from you.

Furthermore, pay attention to how he speaks about other people, particularly women who are more negative than positive when it comes to relationships.

Chances are if the person views other women in unhealthy ways, then their attitudes towards women won't be much different either. That isn't someone who will respect and cherish your relationship for sure!

2. Evaluate your feelings and needs

The second step to answering the question "is he using me?" is evaluating your feelings and needs.

Ask yourself, do I feel emotionally supported in this relationship? Are we able to communicate our needs to each other? Is it mutually beneficial and fulfilling? Am I feeling valued and appreciated? Does it feel like I'm putting in more effort than him? Does he prioritize my wants and needs over his? Do my feelings matter in this relationship or are they secondary to his agenda?

Self-awareness is critical when assessing a relationship. If you are not comfortable discussing your feelings or exploring the other person's feelings, this might be an indication that something isn't quite right with the relationship.

If you feel small, unimportant, like he takes more than he gives, these are all signs that something isn't right.

3. Communicate with your partner about your concerns

If you have doubts or are suspicious that your partner is taking advantage of you, it's important to let them know and express your concerns honestly and respectfully.

Communicating with your partner about what worries you have will also give them the chance to explain themselves and hopefully help build trust between the two of you.

It can be difficult to broach the subject with someone you care about, but it's critical to get to the bottom of whether they're using you or not. Try bringing up your feelings towards them in a calm, sensitive manner.

Explain why you feel uneasy, how long those feelings have been stirring inside of you, and how they impact the relationship. Then listen carefully to what they say and make sure they stay true to their words.

Pay attention to how they respond and pay attention to any nonverbal cues that may tell a different story than what comes out of their mouth.

4. Set boundaries and establish mutual respect

Setting boundaries and mutual respect go hand-in-hand. If one partner feels there is no respect for their presence, then it is important to establish boundaries around physical touch, communication, and other areas of life.

Mutual respect can be found in a healthy relationship by both partners showing respect for the other’s decisions and supporting them through difficult times.

Also, make sure to set healthy boundaries with the person you’re dating. This means understanding when they need time alone or need time away from the relationship without feeling guilty or uncomfortable.

Being in control of your needs will help make sure things don’t get too out of hand without either party knowing. Setting up clear expectations can also help avoid unwanted situations and keep both parties safe and comfortable.

5. Seek support from friends and family

One of the best things you can do if you're feeling confused about someone's intentions is to seek support from your friends and family.

Talking through your situation with trusted loved ones can be incredibly helpful as they can offer insight and perspective from the outside looking in. This is especially true if certain emotions are blocking your clarity on the situation.

Your friends and family can also provide non-judgmental advice about what could be going on, help you take the right steps toward a solution, and act as a comforting source of emotional support during this tough time.

Most importantly, they want the best for you and want to make sure that no one is taking advantage of you - so their input can be invaluable in guiding your actions!

6. Consider seeking professional help or therapy

Sometimes it’s hard to pinpoint the source of our relationship struggles, so seeking outside help from a therapist can be a great way to identify and address any underlying issues.

Therapy offers you a safe place to examine your relationships, without feelings of shame and guilt. This is especially important if you're worried he's using you as an emotional crutch for his own needs.

A professional therapist will help you work through problems like low self-esteem which could be making it easier for him to exploit or use you.

In therapy, you'll be able to talk openly about what's going on in your relationship and get objective advice from the therapist on how to proceed differently.

7. Determine if the relationship is worth saving or if it's time to move on

Once you've determined whether or not your partner is using you, it's time to decide if the relationship is worth saving or if it's time to move on. In the end, this is a decision only you can make.

You need to assess the risks associated with continuing the relationship. Will staying in the relationship hurt you emotionally and/or create further financial difficulties?

Moreover, if all of the little things that matter such as communication, kindness, trust, and honesty are gone, it's time to move on. Relationships should be full of warmth and care not resentment or mistrust so if those things have been absent for an extended period it may be best just to let go.

8. Don't blame yourself for being used

Sometimes, when someone is using you, it's easy to blame yourself. You might feel guilty or like you’re not worthy of their attention.

But here’s the thing; if someone is taking advantage of you, it’s not your fault. Don't blame yourself for being used - the onus is on your partner, to be honest, and respectful at all times.

No one deserves to be taken advantage of and no one should feel ashamed or embarrassed that they have been in such a situation.

It can help to talk to friends and family about how you’re feeling and ask for advice on what steps to take/to avoid this happening again in the future.

9. Learn from the experience and take steps to protect yourself in the future

If he is using you, learn from this experience and take steps to protect yourself in the future.

Trust your gut instincts and avoid any situation where your security or comfort level may be compromised. Set boundaries and stick to them – make sure he knows that your time and energy are not to be taken for granted.

Finally, work on ensuring that you are happy with yourself so that you don’t rely too much on others for happiness. Healing from a tough relationship can take time, but it will enable you to maintain independence even as you form new connections with people who recognize how valuable you are.

10. Take time for self-care and prioritize your well-being

It can be difficult to think about yourself in a situation like this, especially if you truly care for the person.

However, it is essential to take some time away and focus on your own needs. Remember that being with someone always includes putting your own needs first as well.

Make sure to prioritize self-care and do whatever makes you feel best. Whether that’s taking baths, going out with friends, or getting involved in things you love and enjoy, everything should come before the relationship so that you can build up your trust around it.

As the saying goes: “You cannot pour from an empty cup” - make sure yours is filled up before trying to care for others!

Frequently Asked Questions

In trying to figure out the answer to "is he using me?", people usually have a lot of questions to find the truth.

Here are some of the most frequent questions people have when they believe they’re being used by their partner:

What does it mean to be used by someone?

Being used by someone means that they are taking advantage of you for their benefit, without any feelings for or consideration of yours. They could be using you for emotional or physical support, or even just taking advantage of the situation or relationship even if it doesn't directly benefit them.

How do I confront him if I suspect he is using me?

Confronting your partner if you suspect they are using you can be a tough challenge. You likely feel unsure, insecure, and conflicted and confrontation can be scary. However, it is important to face the truth about your relationship as soon as possible and move forward in the best way for you.

Maybe most importantly try not to take anything personally - remember that this is all about understanding the reality of your relationship and finding out what is best for both of you.

Explore any misunderstandings or issues openly and honestly so that both parties can have closure with respect even if things don't work out between you both romantically in the end.

How can I protect myself from being used by him?

If you are fearful of being exploited or taken advantage of, here are a few tips for protecting yourself:

  1. Become more aware of your own needs. Know what it is that you need to feel safe and secure. Spend time figuring out how to take care of those needs yourself.
  2. Pay attention to red flags and don’t ignore them. If something they say or do seems off, trust your instincts and speak up about it.
  3. Practice healthy boundaries and stand your ground when faced with inappropriate behavior from others. Know where to draw the line and learn how to communicate that line fully with other people in a respectful way.
  4. Consider engaging in activities that make you more independent instead of relying on others for your happiness or feelings of self-worth. Invest in yourself—you are worth it!

How can I assert myself and ensure that my needs are being met in a relationship where I suspect I am being used?

One of the most important steps you can take to make sure you're not being taken advantage of in a relationship is learning how to assert yourself. When someone is using you, they aren't typically providing what you need in the relationship. You may feel neglected or unheard.

To help change this dynamic, it's important to learn how to establish and communicate boundaries, set limits on what you are willing to do or accept, and express your needs clearly and confidently.

To do this, think about what your needs are in the relationship—leisure activities together, more compliments or words of affirmation, hanging out with friends as a couple—and prioritize them, however, feel most comfortable for you.


In conclusion, "is he using me?" can be a very tricky question to answer most of the time. However, if you suspect that your partner may be using you—or if you just want to know for sure if he is—paying attention to these 21 little-known signs can help you uncover the truth.

Even if his actions don’t reflect what a fulfilling relationship looks like, remember that it doesn’t necessarily mean he’s using you.

Be sure to remain vigilant and considerate of your own needs first and foremost in the relationship.

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